After last night’s premiere of Dancing With the Stars, which couples are at the top of the leader board?
Last night, ABC kicked off the 29th season of Dancing With the Stars!
It was a premiere unlike any in the show’s history, with canned applause replacing the live audience due to COVID-19 restrictions and the presence of a new host, Tyra Banks. Also, absent from the ballroom was Len Goodman, who, due to being unable to travel to Los Angeles from his home in London, has been replaced this season by longtime Dancing With the Stars pro Derek Hough.
Still, there was much to enjoy as we saw the return of longtime Dancing With the Stars judges Carrie Ann Inaba and Bruno Tonioli as well as Dancing with the Stars pros such as Cheryl Burke, Keo Motsepe, Sharna Burgess, and Val Chmerkovskiy. Of course, we can’t forget our stars, which include the likes of Backstreet Boys member AJ McLean, The Bachelorette’s Kaitlyn Bristowe, Olympic skater Johnny Weir, and Tiger King’s Carole Baskin.
So at the end of the night, which couples ended up at the top of the leader board? Let’s talk about it!
1. Skai Jackson & Alan
This week, Skai Jackson of Disney Channel fame and her partner Alan Bersten danced the tango to Nicki Minaj’s “Super Bass.” The judges praised Skai’s posture and flexibility, with Carrie Ann Inaba praising Skai’s ability to cope up with the height difference between her and Alan.
By the end of it all, the pair received straight sevens from the judges, for a total of 21 out of 30 points, putting them at the top of the leaderboard!
2. Justina Machado & Sasha
For their first dance of the season, One Day At a Time star Justina Machado and her partner Sasha danced the cha-cha to Aretha Franklin’s “Respect.” The judges gave the pair rave reviews citing Justina’s confidence and charisma as the selling point for the whole performance, and Derek Hough would give the pair their only note as he cautioned Justina to watch out for her feet turns.
Despite that, the couple would also receive straight sevens from the judges, for another total of 21 out of 30 points.
3. Kaitlyn Bristowe & Artem
While there were no roses to be given out last night, The Bachelorette star Kaitlyn Bristowe and her partner Artem got something a bit sweeter.
The judges praised the pair’s performance of the cha-cha to Lady Gaga’s “Stupid Love” despite Carrie Ann urging Kaitlyn to work on her feet placement while Bruno Tonioli and Derek told her to work on her finishes and urged the pair to be a bit more daring in their performance next week.
While Carrie Ann would end up giving the pair a six, Bruno and Derek would each award the couple sevens, bringing their total for the week to 20 out of 30 points.
4. Nev Schulman & Jenna
There was nothing fake about the performance that Catfish’s Nev Schulman gave with his partner Jenna last night. The pair danced the foxtrot to Frank Sinatra’s “The Way You Look Tonight,” and the judges would praise the duos for giving a refined performance that transported them back in time.
Although all three judges would tell Nev to work on his wrist and legwork, Bruno would give them a seven, Carrie Ann, and Derek would each give the pair a six, giving them a total for the week of 19 out of 30 points.
5. Monica Aldama & Val
Finally, we have Monica Aldama from Netflix’s Cheer. Monica and her partner Val danced the foxtrot to Rascal Flatts’s “My Wish.”
While all three judges praised the gracefulness and elegance of the performance, Bruno and Derek would tell Monica to work on her arm placement and Carrie would point out Monica’s raised foot, which she’d docked points from Vernon Davis and Peta Murgatroyd for earlier that night. Although she would ultimately dock points from Monica and Val, giving them a six along with Bruno, a seven from Derek would tie the pair with Nev & Jenna.
What did you think of last night’s premiere of Dancing With the Stars? Do you enjoy Tyra Banks as the new host? Finally, is there a pair that you think deserved a higher score, and who do you think will be the first couple eliminated from the competition? Let us know your thoughts.
Dancing With the Stars will return on Tuesday, September 22 at 8/7c on ABC.